Civil War letters from Francis Pettibone

1 - Murfeesboro, TN, 5/21/1863

2 - Chattanooga, TN, 12/19/1863

3 - Chattanooga, TN, 12/21/1863

4 - Savannah, GA, 12/21/1864

5 - Girard, PA, 6/15/1865

Murfreesboro May 21st 63
Dear Uncle
I thought I would occupy a few spare moments in writing you a few lines. I am enjoying good health at present and wish the same to yourself and friends. The weather is very warm here. it is about as hot now as you ever get up north although there are days that are more sultry there. We have changed camp since I wrote you last are now moved out a couple of miles farther. We have splendid water now there is a large boiling spring about 60 rods from the camp which would supply the whole Army with water. We are in the woods now and it is much more pleasant than the old camp. Rosecrans is moving everything rations clothing and all inside the fortifications. There mounting guns in the forts all the time I saw about twenty 60 pounders at the depot the other day which had just come through I would not wonder if the old Rosa [?] anticipated an attack he is going to be prepared for it at any rate. I should judge from all accounts that Hooker was but little better than defeated at the late Fredricksburg fight. The Army of the Potomac can't win a victory I don't believe. I have pretty much made up my mind that we will see our little three years out in the US service. Well it only lacks two months and a half of year that we have been out already. time never slipped away so rapidly to me as it does here a month seems but little longer than a week ought too How are Grandfather & Grandmother and all the folks. I have not had a letter in some time I don't get as much time to write since I have been driving team [?] as before but I like it better than doing duty in the ranks it is easier. I have no news to write you. Write to me as often as you can conveniently and I should like to hear from some of the rest of them. a letter does a soldier more good than any other man please excuse the stamp on this letter I can't find any in camp. Give my best respects to all.
Yours truly
F.A. Pettibone
to
C.A. Pettibone

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Chattanooga Dec 19th/.63
Dear Friend's,
I recd your kind & welcome letter of Dec 10th to day & was glad to hear from you. The stamp's were all right. Our regt has been doing picket duty about six miles to the front for the past eight days & we were just relieved & returned to camp to day. The weather is cold for this country. I can assure you. It makes a man shiver on a picket outpost without fire. these cold nights but there is one consolation there are no reb's to pop a man over with an ounce of lead every time he shows his face. I saw Capt Wright to night. He said there were a good many inquiries about me which he answered to the best of his ability for which I of course thanked him. He said also that you were at his house but he was not at home. I wish you could have seen him. You would have found him a fine, agreeable old fellow. Everything about here runs smoothly as ever. There are no great military movements being made at the present time. The 4th, 11th & 15th Army Corps which have been up toward Knoxville have all returned. There is as yet no positive information as to the results of Burnsides fighting other than that he has given Longstreet a severe punishing. Well I had to stop & eat my supper. I tell you we had a tiptop one. It consisted of a Johnny Cake baked in a old fashioned bake kettle, coffee & bacon. It was a supper good enough for a king. I am becoming quite an expert in the science of cooking. Especially of the kinds of grub furnished a soldier. You ask what are the prospects of getting a furlough. I think they are poor. There are so many of the old regiments reenlisting in the veteran service & are all having furloughs allowed them that I hardly think we will get any this winter. Well when I get to go home I want to have this war wound up so that I will not have to come back again. I should like very much to attend some of those tea parties of which you speak. I think if you only had a box of hard tack & side of bacon to display upon a table that the demand for tickets would diminish for I hardly think they would please the fastidious appetites of some of the gay & festive young people which throng such places. Could they only be convinced that they are better than all the cake & pie ever mixed perhaps the draft would be unnecessary. Well I can't think of anything of interest or importance. Write often as convenient & I will do likewise. Give my best respects to all & C
Your's truly
F.A. Pettibone
Co. G, 105, 004,

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Chattanooga Dec. 21st / 63
Dear Uncle
Not having heard from you in some time I thought I would write you again & let you know that I am yet alive & all right. I have not heard from you but once for three months & that was by mother. I suppose however that you are very busy now days. Everything around Chattanooga at present is quiet. Since we drove Bragg away there has been nothing of importance here to disturb the daily routine of a soldiers life. I do not think there will be any forward movement of the army until another spring & then if the rebellious states shall not have returned to allegiance we will push the miserable traitors into the Gulf of Mexico & then see if they will come to terms. Deserters are coming in continually from the rebel army. They have the same old story. Great disaffection in the ranks & an almost universal desire for peace. They claim there are many waiting to desert but dare not try it until they sure of getting clear of Jeff's minnions If the war should last a year longer & it prove as disastrous as the past year has been to them the fighting stock of the Confederacy will be about played out. It is however all gammon to talk to talk of starving the confed's They have more to eat than we do just at the present time. For the past two weeks our regt has been guarding a bridge across Chickaumauga Creek some 10 miles to the front & the country has plenty of forage. Cribs of corn are abundant & citizens have their garrets & cellars filled with wheat, flour & meal We just lived on the country & lived on the top shelf I tell you. I hardly think there will be a possibility of getting furloughs this winter as so many of the older regts are reenlisting and going home on furloughs There are eight Ohio regiments in our division which came out in the first call for three hundred thousand & they have all enlisted in the veteran service. How are matters & things about Girard? I wish you would write me as soon as convenient. I can think of nothing of interest to write. Give my best respects to all. Write often as you can & I will do likewise.
Direct to me
Chattanooga
Tenn
Co. G. 105 004
2 Brig 3rd Div
14 A.C.
Yours truly
F.A. Pettibone
to
Mr. C.A. Pettibone

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[note inserted at the top of letter:] Savannah is ours official
F.A.P.
Front of Savannah
Dec 21st 64
Dear Uncle
Not being busy to day I thought I would write you a few lines to let you know that I am yet top of the Georgia soil and just as able to eat full rations as any other man. As you were long before this probably aware Sherman has changed his base of operations & of supplies. We cut the last tie that bound us to the north at Kingston Ga. & from there set out for our then unknown destination. The towns below Kingston on the rail road were destroyed. We lay at Atlanta one day and when we left it was an "ocean of flame the 14th & 20th Corps followed along the Augusta R.R. while the 15th & 17th Corps took the Macon R.R. Everything in the shape of property was destroyed. The RRds were torn and burned so as to render them useless until they are entirely rebuilt. Then about 50 miles from Atlanta the 14th Corps turned directly south so as to strike Milledgeville where we lay two days & destroyed the public buildings. The town has a nice situation but it is not very much of a place The fact of its being the capital is all that ever gave it a name. From there we went across to Sousville & then took a south east course to Savannah. We had a splendid time taking every thing into consideration. The weather was fine for the time of year The marching was ease. There was but little fighting & forage of every kind was plenty We just lived fat on what the country furnished. There is no end to the swamps in this part of the country. It is almost impossible to get this army near enough Savannah to take it. Swamps is all that hinder them from running right over rebels fortifications & all. It won't be very many days untill we are in the city. We drew hard tack last night direct from N.Y.L.P.M. [?] There are rumors afloat that Savannah is ours. But how true it is I don't know. Some claim it has been evacuated. Others that it has surrendered. We will find out to night I expect it has been remarkably quiet along the lines to day. Then old Abe was triumphantly elected. Bully for Abe. I am well & all right. In less than eight months if I meet with no misfortune you may look too see me around Girard. Give my best respects to all who may be interested. Write as often as convenient. Direct as usual only to Savannah in place of Atlanta.
Yours truly
Frank Pettibone

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Girard June 15th 65
Dear Uncle
I am now at your house & as Caroline wishes me to write you a few lines to let you know that she has just heard from you. I am now a citizen of the U.S.A. having received the American Buzzard recognizing me as such last Thursday. We were mustered out in Washington on the 2nd of June. I expect you were there before we left but I did not know it or I would have tried to found you. Caroline & the children are all well & in fact all the friends are well as near as I can learn. I am in a good deal of a hurry & I have not time to write very much. I am in hopes you will be discharged before very long & I think you will be at home by the Fourth of July. I have no time to write any more. Caroline sends you two dollars write to me as soon as convenient.
Yours truly
Frank Pettibone

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